August 5, 2020 (Nyamilepedia) – South Sudan’s main armed opposition group, SPLA-IO, led by the country’s First Vice President Dr. Riek Machar Teny, has accused the South Sudan People’s Defense Force (SSPDF) of provocation and violation of the revitalized peace deal for calling a senior SPLA-IO officer a high-way criminal.
On Sunday, SSPDF spokesman Maj. Gen. Lul Ruai Koang told Nyamilepedia from Juba that detained SPLA-IO officer, General Gabriel Bol Wek, is a highway criminal and robber who has been terrorizing travelers in the highways in Bahr el Ghazal region.
Lul also said he – like many others in the SSPDF – were surprised when SPLA-IO “claimed” that General Bol was one of their officers.
In a statement on Tuesday, Col. Lam Paul Gabriel, the SPLA-IO deputy spokesman, said his group was concerned by the remarks against General Wek by General Lul Ruai saying such practices amount to provocation and violation of the 2018 peace deal.
“The SPLA-IO read with concern the comments allegedly made by the SSPDF Spokesperson, Maj. Gen. Lul Ruai against the SPLA-IO General (Brig. Gabriel Bol Wek) on Nyamilepedia online news outlet,” Lam said in the statement seen by Nyamilepedia.
“While this comments amount to provocation and above all, violation of the R-ARCSS, the SPLA-IO command chooses to solve this negative propaganda administratively with the SSPDF command and the peace monitoring mechanisms in the spirit of peace,” he added.
The group further urged the peace monitors such as RJMEC, CTSAMVM, SSM, and JDB “to investigate these accusations made against Brig. Gabriel Bol Wek and bring whoever is guilty to book.”
He further reiterated the group’s commitment to the implementation of the revitalized peace agreement.
“The SPLA-IO remains committed to the implementation of the R-ARCSS,” he said.